Alternative Medicine

Britain's Herbalists No Longer in Danger of Losing Jobs

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By Kate Wharmby Seldman

Britain has allowed herbal practitioners to bypass the European Union’s ban on prescribing herbal medicine.

New EU laws, due to go into effect April 1, will stop anyone but licensed medical practitioners from importing and prescribing herbs and roots for health purposes. The laws are supposed to make sure all medicines are properly regulated and licensed. The UK, however, has sidestepped the laws by allowing the Health Practitioners Council to create a register of natural health practitioners who prescribe unregulated herbal products. British practitioners must sign up for the register if they want to continue practicing herbal medicine, but they don’t have to become doctors to do so.

Oxford herbalist Luanne Richards told newspaper The Oxford Mail, “I feel greatly relieved that I can continue treating patients with herbs which are natural, effective and without serious side-effects.”

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